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Electricity Party Planning

I'm Elaine, and I'm the Youth Programs Coordinator here at The Bakken Museum, and I'm here to tell you about Benjamin Frankin and his static electricity experiments.

Benjamin Franklin is well known for his experiments with lightning, especially the key and kite experiment. However, Franklin’s fascination with static electricity and its properties began far before he ever began tampering with thunderstorms. Franklin began experimenting with static electricity in 1746.

In pursuit of practical uses for electricity, Franklin remarked in 1749 that he felt "chagrin'd a little" that his experiments had so far resulted in "nothing in this way of use to mankind." So Franklin proposed a practical demonstration. He suggested throwing a party where a turkey was to be killed with electric shock and roasted on an electrical spit, and where charged drinks would be served that shocked you when you sipped them.

We don’t know if Franklin ever hosted this party, but I’m sure if he did it was a shocking good time!

The Bakken Museum Audio Tour 2020
  1. Squabbits
  2. Glass Armonica
  3. Torpedo Fish
  4. Route 66
  5. Vivien Thomas
  6. La Science Amusante
  7. The Vampyre
  8. The Asthma Inhaler
  9. Electricity Party Planning
  10. Galvanism
  11. The Franklin Room
  12. Who Lived Here?
  13. Origins of Science Fiction